Am I The Problem? Finding Accountability Within
I once heard of a story of a man who went to a friend’s house for dinner. Once he got inside the house he noticed a foul smell. Disgusted, he began to internally criticize his friend, “if he has a nasty house, then the food will be bad.” He leaves and goes to another friend’s house, and alas, there’s a foul smell there. After visiting two more places he begins to notice that all of these places smell and he goes to the only safe haven that he knows is free from odor: his house. Once he gets in, he realizes the smell is there as well. While tracking it, he looked under his shoe and realized that he had stepped in a large pile of dog feces and that’s where the smell was coming from.
So many times in life we’re down on our luck, constantly in bad relationships, or horrible jobs, and when we try to find out the reason why, we look at everything else, but not at ourselves. However, I’m here to encourage you to look internally, because too many times we’re the reason why we’re in the situation that we’re in.
To give an example, *putting myself on blast alert* when I was in high school I became best friends with a girl named *Renee (name changed). Our friendship lasted past high school, and when I went to college, she went into the armed forces and our friendship continued. Even when she was overseas in Iraq, she would call, we’d write each other, I mean, that was like my fourth sister. But after she got married, we stopped talking. I was at a loss, thinking that our friendship ended because her husband wasn’t too fond of me. It wasn’t until a very heated email exchange that she let me know why the friendship ended.
Renee had always been there for me. If I needed help moving out of my dorm, she would drive the three hours to help me move; if I overdrew my account, she would put money in it; if I had guy troubles, she would listen. Now, don’t get me wrong, if I was financially stable at the time I would have done the same for her. If we met up and I had money, I would pay for us to eat, or I’d offer to pay her back, but she denied. But when it came time to be in her wedding as her maid of honor and I couldn’t afford to make it there, that’s when the last straw broke her back (not saying that she’s a camel, but you know where I’m going with this). She revealed that she had always been a good friend to me, and when she needed me for her wedding I wasn’t there for her.
I was shocked and caught off guard. But what about the time I… wait, but that doesn’t add up to the time that she did x,y, and z for me. Okay, but I did… wait, but she… No matter how I tried to measure my doings for her they never came CLOSE to what she did for me.